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Sen. Kennedy Grills Sally Yates On Steele Dossier: "Yes, It Was" Critically Important To The FISA Applications

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 18:10
Sen. John Kennedy questioned former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates on Tuesday about the Obama administration's "Operation: Crossfire Hurricane" counterintelligence investigation into possible links between the Russians and the 2016 Trump campaign and transition team. During a line of questioning about the Steele dossier, Yates admitted that the Steele dossier was "critically important" to acquiring the FISA warrants needed to investigate a former member of the Trump campaign. Others involved have stated in the past that the Steele dossier was only part of the evidence used to get the warrants. "Tell me every step you took to verify the accuracy of the Steele Dossier," Kennedy told Yates. "I relied on the FBI as the fact finders here and the lawyers in the national security division," she replied. "All of whom hated Trump, right?" Kennedy asked, adding "You despise Trump, don't you?" "No, I don't despise anyone, senator," she replied.

Hawley Blasts Yates: How Did You Not Know Your Deputy Bruce Ohr Was Sharing The Steele Dossier Between DNC, FBI, And DOJ?

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 17:17
Sen. Josh Hawley questioned former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates Wednesday at a Senate Judiciary hearing about who knew the Steele dossier was a political document riddled with incorrect information when the decision was made to cite it as real before the FISA court: SEN. JOSH HAWLEY: I notice that you said that to the [Inspector General] you didn't know who Christopher Steele was, in fact, you opined he might be working for the Republican Party. We know from Steele himself that he told the FBI in July 2016 that he had been hired by the Democrats. We also knew that your deputy Bruce Ohr knew he was working for the Democrats. And the same deputy, Bruce Ohr, your deputy, while he was working for you was actively facilitating contacts between the FBI and Steele and also between the State Department and Steele. How did this happen on your watch? Is it normal for you to permit your deputies to facilitate contacts between political parties and the FBI, and the State Department, is that routine behavior? SALLY YATES: [INAUDIBLE] ... I wasn't allowing Bruce Ohr to do anything, as the Inspector General found in the I.G. report, I was completely unaware of Bruce Ohr's actions. Bruce Ohr had no involvement on our side in any of the Russia investigation or the Carter Page FISAs. SEN. JOSH HAWLEY: I seem to detect a pattern here. Ms. Yates testifies she has no idea what her deputy is doing as he facilitates contacts between the political opposition research and the FBI, has no idea these applications she signed materially misled a federal court, just like Mr. Rosenstein said he had no idea. Nobody appears to know anything in this government and yet somehow a federal court was deliberately and so severely misled so severely that they now say they can't trust anything that the FBI did. If this doesn't call for a cleaning of the house at DOJ and FBI, I don't know what is. I just note that Bruce Ohr is still on the payroll at the Department of Justice.

Yates: Comey Went "Rogue" With Flynn Interview

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 16:22
Former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday that when the FBI interviewed then-incoming national security adviser Michael Flynn in January 2017, it was done without her authorization. Yates said she was angry that FBI Director Comey had "acted unilaterally" and agreed with Chairman Lindsey Graham's assertion that Comey had gone "rogue." "Did Comey go rogue?" Graham asked. "You could use that term, yes," Yates agreed. "I was upset that Director Comey didn't coordinate that with us and acted unilaterally," Yates said.

Sally Yates: Knowing What I Know Now, I Would Not Have Signed FISA Warrant Based On Steele Dossier

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 16:02
Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham questioned former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates on Tuesday about the Obama administration's "Operation: Crossfire Hurricane" counterintelligence investigation into possible links between the Russians and the 2016 Trump campaign and transition team. During a line of questioning about the FISA warrant used to open a counterintelligence investigation, Yates said that based on the Horowitz report, she would not sign a FISA warrant based on a document like the Steele dossier. "I'm not saying you lied to the [FISA] court, I'm saying you signed something that was a lie and didn't know," Graham told Yates.

Sally Yates: Michael Flynn Was Investigated Because He Was "Undercutting Obama Policy And Covering It Up"

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 15:49
Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham questioned former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates on Tuesday about the Obama administration's "Operation: Crossfire Hurricane" counterintelligence investigation into possible links between the Russians and the 2016 Trump campaign and transition team. During a line of questioning about why Trump's incoming National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was caught up in the investigation, which led him to resign and be criminally charged, Yates said Flynn was targeted because he was "undercutting Obama policies and covering it up." Graham said she was criminalizing policy differences, saying that the Trump transition team had every right to set new policies contrary to those of the Obama administration. "The one problem here is you didn't like Flynn changing the policy or talking about changing the policy, and he had every right to do that! We're criminalizing policy differences, that's why Flynn got prosecuted, because they hate his guts," Graham said.

Sally Yates has zero credibility. She was a part of the greatest political crime of the Century, and ObamaBiden knew EVERYTHING! Sally Yates leaked the General Flynn conversation? Ask her under oath. Republicans should start playing the Democrats game!

- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 5, 2020 LINDSEY GRAHAM: Let me try to understand this. The interview with Gen. Flynn, were you investigating a policy difference between Trump administration and the Obama administration? SALLY YATES: No, senator. We weren't investigating a policy difference. LINDSEY GRAHAM: You weren't investigating a crime, were you? SALLY YATES: We were investigating a counterintelligence threat. LINDSEY GRAHAM: Okay, is it a counterintelligence investigation based on a policy difference? SALLY YATES: It's a counterintelligence investigation based on the Russians' systematic attempts to -- LINDSEY GRAHAM: Wait a minute, this is very important. Your beef with Flynn was he was undercutting Obama policy. Is that what you were worried about? SALLY YATES: What we were worried about was he was undercutting Obama policy and then covering it up. LINDSEY GRAHAM: He hadn't even talked to the FBI. You sent the FBI over. And there was no anything. Isn't it the fact that you're really investigating a policy difference? SALLY YATES: No, senator, that is not accurate. There was a coverup before this. In fact, that is what prompted my concerns that he was providing false information to the vice president and others. LINDSEY GRAHAM: Why didn't you go to the White House and ask if this is [their] policy position? SALLY YATES: The concern was not about the policy difference. The concern was about him undercutting Obama policy and then covering it up... LINDSEY GRAHAM: The one problem here is you didn't like Flynn changing the policy or talking about changing the policy, and he had every right to do that! We're criminalizing policy differences, that's why Flynn got prosecuted, because they hate his guts.

Trump: With A Mail-In Vote Problem, It Could Be "Months Or Years" Before We Get Election Results

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 15:20
President Donald Trump cited problems with mail-in voting in election this year in Nevada, New York, and New Jersey Wednesday morning on "FOX & Friends" to justify his opposition to relying on it to have the November election during a pandemic. "You see it in New York in a much smaller scale, we have a congressional race, Carolyn Maloney, Congresswoman, it's been six and a half weeks now, they have no idea what happened," Trump said. "They're thousands of votes off. They're missing votes. There are fraudulent votes. They have to do the election over." "The votes don't have to be counted or tabulated until seven days after November 3rd. So that means if we're waiting for one state and it's a very great, important state, big state, if we're waiting for that state you don't know what the answer's going to be till after maybe seven days, and -- but it's not going to be seven days. It's going to be months or years," he said. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: No, absentee is OK, because you have to go through a process, Brian, and you go through a process, and you make a request and they send it to you and you get it and you fill it out. And it's a process, and it's a smaller number. What they're going to do is blanket the state, anybody that ever walked, frankly, will get one. And you know, the governor's a clubhouse politician, he's somebody that, frankly, was shocking and shocking what he did. More shocking what he did, without town halls, without meetings, without the public, they went out and they just approved this ridiculous system. And the Post Office will never be equipped to handle it. And you see it in New York in a much smaller scale, we have a congressional race, Carolyn Maloney, Congresswoman, it's been six and a half weeks now, they have no idea what happened. They're thousands of votes off. They're missing votes. There are fraudulent votes. They have to do the election over. There's no way that she can take that election because -- I mean, it's between two Democrats, but I guess he's probably, as the expression goes, more progressive. But she's -- she's in trouble. And frankly, they have to do the election over, there's -- KILMEADE: But, you're suing Nevada, right? You're suing Nevada? TRUMP: I'm suing -- I'm suing -- no, but it's the same thing, it's mail-in voting. Patterson, New Jersey, 20 percent of the votes were either fixed or messed up or missing or fraudulent and people are in big trouble. The town council, the mailmen, a lot of people are in big trouble. That's Patterson, that's 20 percent of the votes. You can't do a mail-in vote. Now, Florida's different in the sense that it had been doing it, and they've had two very good governors, frankly, and they have an infrastructure that's taken years to build, but Nevada they start voting very soon, and he just threw it out there. And the other thing is the votes don't have to be counted or tabulated until seven days after November 3rd. So that means if we're waiting for one state and it's a very great, important state, big state, if we're waiting for that state you don't know what the answer's going to be till after maybe seven days, and -- but it's not going to be seven days. It's going to be months or years. They will never be able to tabulate their votes because they're not set up for it.

Trump: Some Of These Countries Held Up As Great COVID-19 Examples Are Now Having Big Second Waves

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 15:02
Wednesday morning on "FOX & Friends," President Trump expressed optimism that the COVID-19 pandemic could be over by Election Day, but warned that other countries held up by the media as examples are now experiencing a second wave of the virus. BRIAN KILMEADE: Mr. President and if -- and they did not want to use their state police until you brought in the federal agents and then they agreed to use the state police. So, that seems to be a victory. I don't want to spend too much time on the elections, but looking at the pandemic, seniors and those with underlying conditions are most concerned about voting. They could be the most patriotic person in the world, but even your age bracket, Mr. President, they're concerned about going out in a crowded area, and it's legitimate. So, having said that, what does the Administration plan on doing to make it easier? More poll sites, clean teams, making demand -- demanding more -- more places in more areas. Providing the financing to do that, so if we admit there's a pandemic and a hurdle, what do you plan on doing at it if mail-in voting makes you unsettled? PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Brian, all of those things and more, but all of those things. And remember, November 3rd is a long way, that's a long way. The numbers are coming down very rapidly in Florida, they're coming down in California, they're coming down in Texas, they're coming down. Those three places shot up and those numbers are coming down. So, by the time we get there we'll probably be in very good shape. But all of those things, cleanliness, they'll wear the mask, they'll do whatever they have to do, but they want to vote. We have people that really want to get out and vote. It's going to be very safe, but by November 3rd, that's -- you know, time wise that's eternity, frankly, as far as I'm concerned. For Trump that's eternity, and November 3rd is a long ways off. A lot of things are going to happen and I think it's going to be very positive. KILMEADE: But, we could have a second wave. The virus got a mind of its own. TRUMP: You could have a second wave, other countries have had a second wave. You know what nobody talks about is some of these countries that were being held up as the greatest examples, they're having massive second waves now, and look at what's happening with Australia. And you look at what's happening to France. You look at Spain, is it a big, big second wave. Italy's got a wave going. A lot of countries are having a -- but nobody ever talks about that. We have done an incredible job in this country, an incredible job. And our testing is the best ever, the best in the world. And everybody talks about it, other than some of the fake news, they don't like talking about it.

Biden To Interview Potential Running Mates As First Presidential Candidate To Consider Only Women

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 14:55
Former Vice President Joe Biden is interviewing potential running mates this week and is expected to announce his choice the following week. Biden's pick will be the third woman in U.S. history to run for vice president on a major party ticket. CBS's Ed O'Keefe reports.

Trump: Would Be "Easiest And Very Beautiful" To Do RNC Speech "Live From The White House"

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 14:50
President Trump told "FOX & Friends" on Wednesday morning that it might be most convenient to do his Republican National Convention speech live from the White House. PRESIDENT TRUMP: Well, we are going to have -- we're going to have the very first night we'll be in Charlotte. But that's locked down, that state -- the governor just locked them down, I don't know what he's doing. They just locked North Carolina down. We were dying -- we were really wanting to go to North Carolina, and so what we are doing is we are doing one night there. And it'll be a nomination night and it'll go very well. We're going to let the press go in and watch it, but socially distanced and lots of things are happening. The state is in a lockdown. States are -- we had no choice. We went to Jacksonville, a place that we're very good, but after we announced, all of a sudden Florida got hit, and now Florida's recovering. But what we're going to do is we're going to do virtual and we're going to do some live speeches from different locations, and I'm going to do mine on Thursday night, and that'll be a lot -- the First Lady's making a speech. Numerous people are making speeches, senators, a lot of very, very terrific people. We have a terrific -- KILMEADE: Right. TRUMP: -- really a terrific speakers list. Some of the warrior congressmen that you've watched, Jim Jordan and so many others, Matt Gaetz. We have -- these guys were warriors fighting against just a horrible force that hopefully will get their act together. KILMEADE: Right. Mr. President? TRUMP: We'll have some great, great people making speeches. KILMEADE: Speaking of -- TRUMP: I'll probably do mine live from the White House. KILMEADE: So, it looks like live from the White House. It's -- so would you say you're locked in on that? TRUMP: No. KILMEADE: OK. TRUMP: If for some reason somebody had difficulty with it, I could go someplace else. The easiest, least expensive, and I think very beautiful would be live from the White House. KILMEADE: Right. Your home there and bills are all paid for.

Trump Campaign Ad: "Joe Biden Sits In His Basement, Alone, Hiding, Diminished"

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 14:46
This new ad from the Trump campaign titled "Delaware" mocks rival Joe Biden for "hiding" in his basement and blasts him as a "crazy far-left" and "diminished" old man.

Texas Woman Blames Trump, Abbott, Anti-Mask People For Her Husband's COVID-19 Death: "Shame On You"

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 14:32
Texas widow Stacey Nagy told CNN's Erin Burnett on Tuesday how she wrote an obituary after her husband's coronavirus death where she blamed President Trump, Texas Gov. Abbott and those who do not wear masks because she felt a need to "put blame where it belonged."

Alex Berenson: "There Are Good, Epidemiological Reasons That Lockdowns Don't Work"

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 14:28
Former New York Times reporter Alex Berenson told FNC's Tucker Carlson on Tuesday that lockdowns do not work. "There are good, epidemiological reasons that lockdowns don't work," he told Carlson Tuesday, "which is why, for 15 years, experts on pandemics said this was not a good idea and all of a sudden in March they threw out everything they been saying." Berenson, the author of "Unreported Truths about COVID-19 and Lockdowns," said "there is good reason to believe, if you look at some of the Sun Belt states, that maybe the worst of the second wave or the summer spike is behind us." "Hospitalizations in places like Arizona and Florida and Texas are all declining ..." he added. "Other people in the media are going to be able to, probably, look at slightly rising death counts maybe for some period in the next few days and make hay with that if they want to, but if you actually look at hospitalizations, it looks like we are maybe past the worst of this in the Sun Belt." Berenson elaborated on his ideas in this podcast with Dr. Drew Pinsky last month.

Former Deputy AG Sally Yates Testifies At Senate Judiciary "Crossfire Hurricane" Hearing

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 14:16
The Senate Judiciary Committee holds second hearing on oversight of the Crossfire Hurricane investigation as part of probe into the Trump-Russia investigation. Former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates testifies before Congress Wednesday. President Trump commented:

Sally Yates has zero credibility. She was a part of the greatest political crime of the Century, and ObamaBiden knew EVERYTHING! Sally Yates leaked the General Flynn conversation? Ask her under oath. Republicans should start playing the Democrats game!

- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 5, 2020

Biden Snaps At Reporter: Why The Hell Would I Take A Cognitive Test? "Are You A Junkie?"

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 13:49
Former VP Joe Biden revealed that he has not taken the cognitive abilities test that President Trump spoke about last week and lashed out at CBS's Errol Barnett for asking about it. Biden was taking part in an interview with a group of Black and Latino journalists. "No, I haven't taken a test. Why the hell would I take a test?" Biden replied. "C'mon man, that's like saying, 'You - before you got on this program you took a test where you're taking cocaine or not, what do you think? Huh? Are you a junkie?'" "If he can't figure out the difference between an elephant and a lion, I don't know what the hell he's talking about," Biden said laughing at Trump. "Look, c'mon man, I know you're trying to goad me... And by the way, as I joked with -- you, know, I probably shouldn't say." "I am willing to let the pubic judge my physical as well as mental fitness," he said.

Pelosi: There's No "In Between" For Unemployment Benefits, It's $600

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 06:17
PBS NEWSHOUR: As the coronavirus pandemic continues to rage across the U.S., the Trump administration and Congress are still discussing another economic aid package. But on Tuesday, the White House and leading Democratic lawmakers gave different accounts of how much progress is being made. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a central figure in those negotiations, joins Judy Woodruff to discuss where talks stand. JUDY WOODRUFF, PBS NEWSHOUR: So, are you coming closer together on that all-important unemployment - federal unemployment benefits number? Democrats were asking for $600 a week to continue. SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI: That's right. WOODRUFF: Republicans were saying $200. Are you somewhere in between? We were told maybe you're… PELOSI: No, there's no in between. There's no in between. The fact is that, since we passed our bill, which was 11 weeks ago tomorrow, 3.3 million more people have gone on to the infected list; of those infected, 70,000 more people have died. And the Republicans said they were going to push the pause button. And they did. And then, last week, they came up with some piecemeal thing. So, the - we're not saying to the American people, more people are infected, more people are dying, more people are uninsured, more children are hunger-insecure, or food-insecure, and guess what? We're going to cut your benefit. WOODRUFF: Well, Madam Speaker, the - I mean, with all due respect, you called it piecemeal, and yet what the Republicans were offering was a short-term extension that would have allowed these extra unemployment benefits to keep flowing. Democrats said no. PELOSI: Well, it would have been finished by now. They were talking about a few - actually, the fact is, they didn't have anything that they could pass in the Senate on their own side. So, if the press wants to say, well, they offered this, they offered that, they - you can't offer something you don't have. We have a bill. It's called the HEROES Act. It passed 11 weeks ago tomorrow. It would have saved lives. They have nothing. They can't even pass - they have said, we have 20 members who won't vote for anything. So, what, we're talking rhetoric, or are we talking reality about what one side or the other is offering? And if they wanted to offer some piecemeal thing for one week that does not - you only do that when you're on the verge of closing, of passing a bill and having it signed into law. Otherwise, it's just showbiz.

Senate Hearing on The Right of the People Peaceably to Assemble: Protecting Speech by Stopping Anarchist Violence

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 06:11
The Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on the Constitution hearing entitled The Right of the People Peaceably to Assemble: Protecting Speech by Stopping Anarchist Violence on Tuesday, August 4, at 2:30 p.m., in Room 562 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building.

McEnany: The Only Thing We Recognize About Democrats Right Now Is How Appalling They Are

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 06:02
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany is asked why Democrats were not at the signing ceremony for the Great Outdoors Act. REPORTER: Kayleigh, thank you. The environmental bill the President signed this morning, it was passed overwhelmingly by both houses of Congress. Both Republicans and Democrats signed on to that legislation. Can you explain why there were no Democrats at the ceremony or even mentioned in the President's remarks? WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY KAYLEIGH MCENANY: The President is very proud of what happened today: the single largest investment in America's national parks and public lands in history. The most significant conservation achievement since Teddy Roosevelt. It won the support of more than 850 conservation groups. And it provides $900 million a year in permanent funding to the Land and Water Conservation Fund. And you're asking about recognition of congressional Democrats right now, and the only thing that we're recognizing about congressional Democrats right now is how appalling it is that there are Americans who are going without paychecks, because they refuse to partner with Martha McSally, Republicans, and the President in ensuring that those payments go out.

McEnany: Corresponding Rise In Violence In Democrat Cities That Want To "Defund The Police"

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 05:47
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said when you defund the police there are consequences at Tuesday's press briefing. McEnany laid out the trend of increasing crime in cities that have decided to defund the police. WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY KAYLEIGH MCENANY: I would like to end just by highlighting a troubling trend that I think we've seen play out across the country, and I believe we have a few graphics to illustrate this. It pertains to the Defund the Police movement. And when you look at, across the country, the ties of defunding the police with increases in violence, it's a cause for concern. As we saw in the beginning of this administration, violent crime was starting to come down, and then bring in the Defund the Police movement. In Los Angeles, you had L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti proposing a cut of $150 million from the LAPD. L.A. Mayor Garcetti said this: It starts someplace, and we have to say we are going to be who we want to be, or we're going to continue being the killers that we are, was his quote, in support of the defund movement. And as a result, we saw a 14 percent rise in homicides this year over last year. In Minneapolis, the Defund the Police movement was afoot as well, with a unanimous vote in Minneapolis City and their council to dismantle the police. And you had Minneapolis City council member Jeremiah Ellison saying, This is one action of many that we need to take on the road to a more equitable and just system that keeps people safe. In fact, it did not keep people safe. We've seen a 94 percent increase in homicides compared to last year in Minneapolis. And then, finally, in New York City, Defund the Police - you had the New York City Council voting to cut police budget by $1 billion. You had Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez saying, Defund the police means defunding the police. It does not mean budget tricks or funny math. So it wasn't enough for AOC. But you did have New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio saying, We think it's the right thing to do. It was absolutely not the right thing to do, as we've seen a 177 percent increase in shootings from July 2019 in New York. When you defund the police, there are consequences. And that's where the Democrats of today stand. And, unfortunately, we've seen a corresponding rise in violence in these Democrat cities, and it's not acceptable.

CNN Ad: "A Mask Can Say A Lot About The Person Who Wears It, Even More About The Person Who Doesn't"

Wed, 08/05/2020 - 04:46
In a CNN "Facts First" advertisement, the network said "a mask can say a lot about the person who wears it" and "even more about the person who doesn't." The ad ends with a message on the screen: "Please wear a mask."

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